5th - 12th grade TeacherShoalhaven High Nowra East, Australia
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About Ian Woods
I've been teaching Maths for 11 years. I originally trained as a PDHPE teacher having arrived in Australia with not much other than a BA in Sport Science and a background in outdoor education. With no permanent jobs looming on the horizon, I took advantageof the chance to retrain as a Maths teacher based on an old and underused Engineering Diploma.
I much prefer teaching Maths to PE, but feel that the lack of an actual Tertiary award in Mathematics is probably putting me at a disadvantage (not to mention my students). I am a big believer in educational reform based on my observation of how disaffected my studnets are with the subject and also most people's apathy and memories of their own Maths education. It is possible to find out anything via the internet these days and the job of the chalk-and-talk math teacher is not as succesful as it once was.
I was lucky in my High school Math teacher (thanks Mr Sellers) in that he was extremly pasionate about his subject and had the classroom management skills to get the best out of his students. I wish I had half of his knowledge and skill! Those students lucky enough to get such a teacher will do reasonably well, but I would suggest that they are a monority (having had a number of other teachers who quite succesfully put me to sleep!)
With the best will in the world, I am not going to be a great chalk-and-talk teacher. So, given that I do enjoy the challange of the job and want to stick with it for the next 20 years, I must find a way that is both fun for me and beneficial for my students. I think web2.0 is probably the way to do it.